451 E Niedringhaus Ave., Granite City, IL, 62040 / Cake artist: Kathy Lynott
The most northerly ice-free port on the Mississippi River is managed by the Tri-City Regional Port District. Tri-City was created in 1959 by the Illinois State Legislature as an economic tool for the Metro-East river towns like Granite City and its surroundings. The Port, along with its 70+ tenants, offer several services and facilities, such as transportation, warehouse and real estate leasing, etc. It transfers in excess of 4 million tons of product annually between river barges, railcars and trucks. The Port has been very successful at creating thousands of jobs for those in the Metro East area.
Granite City is the second-largest city in Southern Illinois (according to 2010 census). It was founded by German immigrant brothers Frederick and William Niedringhaus (the street of this location’s namesake), who had a vision of creating a ‘company town’ for their Granite kitchen ware supplies making factory. Since the city’s founding in 1896, several German and eastern European immigrants flooded the place in the early 20th century. Granite City is still known today as a working-class ‘steel town’, and it houses many other manufacturing corporations as well. At one time, it was a suburb of East St. Louis.
Cake placement date: February 25
Where is the cake now?: The cake was removed in January; its whereabouts are unknown. I have asked the management of the YMCA, and no one seemed to know. (May 2017)